Transport offices lack emissions officers and service seekers are at the receiving endSanobharyang and Sallaghari offices have only one mechanical supervisor each to run emissions tests. Their absence means no service.
Rajendra Bilash Maharjan reached the Transport Management Office at Sanobharyang, Kathmandu, for the emissions test of his car on Wednesday. There was already a long queue of vehicles when he reached there.
Maharjan waited for nearly an hour and the vehicles in front of him had barely moved in that period.
It was then that he learned that the technician assigned for the emissions test was on leave.
“I had reached the office fairly early. There was already a big crowd of people who had come to renew their blue books and driver licences. I waited for an hour only then I found out that the emissions test service was closed,” said Maharjan, 43, a businessman by profession.
The office had pasted a notice informing the service seekers that the emissions test was closed for the day.
When the Post reached out to Kapil Silwal, chief of the transport office, he said Sambhu Dahal, the only mechanical supervisor responsible for emissions test, was on leave that day.
Around 80 vehicles undergo emissions tests daily at the Sarobharayang transport office and there is only one person in charge of the job.
“We have only one technican. If he is absent the emissions test service is disrupted,” said Silwal.
The transport office has repeatedly asked the Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport Management, the Department of Transport Management and the Bagmati provincial government to add the number of staff to ensure smooth emissions testing service, but nothing has come of it so far.
“If only we could hire additional technicians, then we need not have to close the service,” said Silwal.
The Department of Transport has made vehicle emissions tests mandatory, but it has not appointed the staff necessary to conduct these tests.
The transport offices in Sallaghari, Bhaktapur, also has only one mechanical supervisor.
“Till now he has not stayed on leave. If he does then we have to close the service,” said Bimal Bhattarai, chief of transport office in Sallaghari.
Besides, transport offices are also facing difficulty managing the vehicles queueing up daily for emissions tests.
The Department of Transport Management under the Ministry of Transport Management had started the licence trial centre from Bhaktapur and Sanobhyrang from 2017, to manage the crowd in Ekantakuna. With the start of emissions test service, the two offices are now struggling to manage the crowd of vehicles.
“We do not have enough parking space, but the government does not listen to us,” said Bhattarai.
When the Post contacted Nabin Kumar Singh, department chief, also senior divisional engineer at the Ministry of Physical Infrastructure Development, Bagmati provincial office in Hetauda, he said that works were in progress to address the concerns of transport offices.
“Recently the central government has approved our work plan for office structure. We do not have an adequate number of staff and we are looking to hire them,” said Singh.
He said new staff members will be appointed through the Public Service Commission, which could take at least four months to conduct the exam.